Kids Bike Buyers Guide

Bicycles are a fantastic gift for children. They’re fun, safe, and encourage the child to be active and enjoy the outdoors. The most important thing to consider when buying a bike for a child is wheel size. This relates to the height of the child more than the child’s age.

However, for simplicity this guide refers to the suitability of the bike relative to approximate age groups. Apart from size, the other important consideration is the frame. A lightweight frame that places the child in a stable, comfortable riding position will be easier and more enjoyable to ride, meaning it will get ridden much more.

12" Wheel Size

Suitable for kids 2 – 4 years old. These bikes come with training wheels, and may feature a push steerer so the child can be directed when required.

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16" Kids Bikes

16” Wheel Size: Suitable for kids aged 3 – 6. Generally come with training wheels and no gears. Some children may not have developed a lot of the strength required for riding, so the bike’s weight will be an important consideration. For older children you may want to consider a 16” BMX for a stronger, heavier duty bike.

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20" Kids Bikes

20” Wheel Size: Suitable for kids aged 6 -10. This is also the standard size for a BMX wheel, and given the lack of gears the kid’s bike and BMX share a lot of similarities. The main difference is a kid’s bike will be lighter and easier to ride, and a BMX will be heavier and more durable. A kid’s bike may be a better option if the child is still learning to ride, while a BMX will be more suitable if the child is already confident (or will be taking it off jumps; or has a tendency to break things…)

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24" Kids Bikes

20" – 24" Geared: As the child becomes a more competent rider, you may start to consider a geared bike. Geared bikes are a great option for kids that will be covering longer riding distances, or live in a hilly area. 20” bikes are suitable for ages 6-10; 24” - ages 8 - 13. For children that are quite tall, or around 13 - 16 years the next progression will be to an adult MTB in extra small size. The MTB style is more suitable than road or hybrid due to smaller wheels, which give a lower ground clearance, as well as improved balance and stability. Cruisers are a great option for girls. The riding position is laid back and relaxed, but in reality, they’re popular because of their awesome colours and retro styling.

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